Saturday, January 21, 2012

A phoebe but not THE phoebe

Eastern Phoebe in Central Park -- 10/08/09
photo by David Speiser --

This morning, during the first real snowfall for the year, birder Anders Peltomaa spotted an Eastern Phoebe at the Gill in the Ramble area. On eBirdsnyc he speculated that it was the same bird he saw hanging around the island on Turtle Pond earlier this winter and the same one that Phil Jeffrey found by the Castle on New Year's Day.

As long-time readers of this website know, every year starting in March I go a little nuts looking for the first phoebe of the Spring migration. The one reported by Anders today, however, is not the one. Clearly it has overwintered in the area, as phoebes occasionally do, [especially during milder winters]. Now that the season has taken a fiercer turn, let's hope this lovely harbinger of spring survives, Meanwhile, come March, I'll still be hunting for the first phoebe of the Spring migration.